I want to make a difference

I want to write about something a little different today.

The same topic, but a little more outside myself and outside our household.

The world saddens me. I cannot help but feel sadness and fear whenever I read the news. And not real news, because that’s not real news. But news, about real people.

Like the little 10 year old Brony that tried to hang himself because people made fun of him because they thought he was gay because he like My Little Ponys.

Like the transgender girl that was set on fire because she wore a skirt to school.

Like every time I read that our community’s suicide and murder rates are exponentially higher than any other. That if the suicide rate were this high for the straight community, the government would call it a public health crisis.

 

I find that the further along I get in my transition, I feel more deeply. I feel more of a call to action. I feel like maybe can make a change in this world.

Recently I contacted my local Big Brothers Big Sisters chapter. I have wanted to be a Big all my life. I know that there are a lot of children out there in need of someone, anyone to support them and hang out with them more than they have.

But I don’t want just that. I want to help someone like me. Someone young and with no support. I want to save someone from taking the path that I did.

So I emailed BBBS and told them my story. I told them how and where I grew up. I told them that I started drinking and using drugs. I told them that I left home at the age of 19 and moved halfway across the country to spend two wasted years of my life with a woman that didn’t deserve my time and attention, just because I wanted to feel love from someone that I thought saw the real me. I told them about how I moved back home when I left her and my parents kicked me out two weeks later because they didn’t like that I brought my new girlfriend home one night. I told them about how instead of letting me be homeless this woman let me move to Minnesota with her, and moved me into her home despite the fact that we had only been dating for two weeks. I told them about the suffering and loneliness that I had endured. That I don’t speak to my parents. That I almost gave up. I told them about my transition. I told them that I wasn’t claiming that if I had a Big or someone in my corner to support me that I thought my life would have been different, that I thought I wouldn’t have felt so much heartbreak, that it wouldn’t have taken me so long to finally be where others are right out of high school when they have that support and encouragement, but I told them that I thought everything would be different. And that I wanted to give that to someone like me. That with everything going on in our society, I thought more children deserved more of a chance. That if we could start an LGBTQ chapter we could touch so many more lives. That we could tell these kids “We See You and We Care.”

I haven’t heard back from them yet.

I’m hoping that I do, because this is something that is very important to me. I don’t think that at this time in my life it is something that I can start on my own, and I’m not totally sure how I would go about doing that, but I really hope since they are already established, it is something that we can get going that way.

And I would be more than happy to be the first LGBTQ Big.

I just really want to make changes. I want to make this a better place to live. I want people to be happy, and I want to stop hearing heartbreaking stories about young children hurting each other and those kids feeling it necessary to end their lives.

Wes.

Day 107

I have began shaving rather frequently because my facial hair is starting to grow in a bit faster. I also noticed a day or two ago that my sideburn area is also getting furrier. Under my chin was always something that I had to shave, but now it is starting to come in a little more.

Tonight I went in to shave because it comes in spotty and since I still don’t really pass I get weird looks when people see how much facial hair I have. I’m sure they just assume that I am unkempt, which is fine, but I would prefer if they didn’t think that.

Anywho… before I shaved I decided to take some progress photos because I am pretty proud of how well everything is starting in already. 

This picture is the left side of my face, this side is doing better than the right. Both of the side burn pictures are about a week without shaving.

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This is the right side. You can tell something is going on, but the camera doesn’t really pick it up. And you have to look really really close…

 

 

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And this is my chin. This has never had an issue growing, its just getting more of it that I need. It is starting to move up my chin in two little patches on the side. I shaved this yesterday. Also, you can see the issues with acne that I am fending off. I really hoped I wouldn’t get any since I didn’t my first go around with puberty, but it’s trying.

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And my mustache trying to get in on the action. This was shaved I believe two weeks ago.

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And just because I feel super cool

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So yeah. I am super proud of how far I’ve come up to this point and am really excited for all the further changes. 

I just had to share!

 

Wes.

Shot 5

This is Kass. 

Tonight Wes attempted to give himself his 5th shot. I have been giving his shots since the first shot. Its usually a bit of dancing around in the bathroom to get him to relax because the needle is the size of a battle ship, but he has admitted that it is most times relatively painless. Tonight though there was a lot of “How are things going” and “Im doing it, sorta” going back and forth between the bathroom door. I dont have an issue with doing the shot, but I figure that since this is a lifetime thing he should get used to doing it himself, just in case for some reason Im unavailable. 

Wes: I cant make myself do it, my hand is just hovering above my thigh. My muscles literally will not move. 

Me: You need to put enough pressure behind it to break the skin

Wes: I just dont know how much that is…

Me: Do you want to practice on an orange or a banana?

Wes: We dont have either…

Me: How about a hotdog bun?

Wes: I just cant make myself do it…

Me: Ok, I’ll be in there to help.

Wes: No! Im going to do it!

Me: Did you do it?

Wes: No. 

Me: Ok, I will come help. 

Next week we will try again. 

Im Kass.

I am cis gendered and have been lesbian identified and out since I was 15. I am married to Wes and very much love him. I was not surprised when he told me he wanted to transition. There were times in our relationship when I saw how much pain he was in and I wanted to tell him what I saw and that I knew. Kinda like when people say “I wish someone would have told me I was gay”, but I waited because I knew he needed to figure it out on his own. I am glad that we are here at this point and he is beginning his transition.

I had an idea in my head of what transitioning would be like. I pictured testosterone shots and hair growth and voice deepening, and masculinity. I pictured support groups and new friends, and community. I pictured the same me and a different outside him but same inside him. I pictured doctors appointments and lots of money being spent. I found out that things that I pictured were wrong and that there is so much more than I had ever thought.

First, being a couple when a person is transitioning essentially means that both people are transitioning. and for awhile I very much thought I was being selfish thinking that. But for over half of my life I have been a lesbian identified cis gendered female. I have been fired from jobs, rejected by family, fought for equal rights, learned to be proud and come to terms with the fact that my identity is beautiful and I am strong and brave and have nothing to hide. And although most people perceive me as a straight woman unless my significant other was standing next to me, I was never closeted while at work, or anywhere else for that matter. One of the things I loved most was hanging pictures of the two of us around my office space. It made my day go faster to look at our memories and see us at our happiest.

I started a new job, it was almost perfect timing really because we decided that we would just use male pronouns from the beginning and eventually I can hang pictures. However it hasn’t been really as easy as that. We got married in September, and the people in my office really like me (for once, its amazing, part of me wonders if its because they all think Im a straight woman and can finally see me and not get hung up in the fact that Im queer) and have been really excited to see wedding photos, and want to know about my husband and have even made jokes to watch out and not get pregnant in the first year of marriage. I go back and forth on wanting to tell people, wanting to let them in, trust them. I have told 4 of my co-workers. The first woman is a lesbian, and although she is part of the queer community I still felt like I was going to throw-up when I was getting ready to tell her (I get a little nauseous when I get nervous). The second person I told was the person I share my desk with, and I felt the same “walls closing in, everything is getting black” feeling I feel when I have to speak in front of an audience. But I made it through. And she and the other person came to our wedding. Recently I told my dad. I had been putting if off because he and I hadnt spoken in 10 years and then just like that we had reconciled. There is nothing in this world that would ever make me pick anyone over Wes, and I was pretty sure my dad was going to be fine with the changes on the horizon, but it was the anxiety and fear of the unknown. The rejection. The having to say goodbye. Each person I tell, the feelings are always the same. I feel like I am coming out again. Its the same “hard talk” feelings, I feel very emotional like I cant control the tears, and I get a little faint, and nauseous. The conversations are usually about 2 minutes long. Like a shot, most of the pain is in the anxiety before.

Another thing Ive realized is there is literally no way to prepare for all the situations that are going to come up during this process. For example, we were swimming the other day as we like to do at the gym and I realized that 1. I like using the locker room with him at this time while he still appears female and will be upset when I have to use the locker room with a bunch of strangers I dont know. 2. What do we do before the top surgery? Which locker room does he use when he looks like a man but hasnt had top surgery. 3. Im nervous for him. Ive always been the person who protects him. I always stand up for him, I always tell people to fuck off if they treat him poorly, and what will happen when Im not there because Im a woman and he’s a man and Im not allowed in the bathroom or locker room.

Another things that has been very different from what I pictured is the community. For some reason I had an illusion that there would be a great support network for trans people and their families out there. But there isnt. We have gone to a few groups, and met a couple people. Some have been really nice and we have genuinely wanted to stay in contact and become friends with them. Other people we felt like it was best to keep our guard up and not let them in too close, which made us a little sad as it felt that was the majority of the people we met. Its really hard to get information on safe doctors and safe spaces, sometimes it can be scary trying to do that stuff on your own and it would be really nice to be able to ask someone.

For now, that is about it. Its been 4 weeks/4 T shots. I for some reason thought he would have a full beard by now. Silly.

 

-Kass.

And so it begins…

I’m Weston.

About a year ago, I finally came to a conclusion. A big one.

I’m transgender.

I’m not a lesbian female. Not anymore. Not really ever. Lesbian was never a proper fit for me. I hate the word for myself. It feels…. foreign.

In my head I’m a man. A good looking one, too. He’s strong and quick witted. Brave. Mysterious. He’s intelligent. An amazing lover, never jealous and always early.

I am none of these things. Well… I’m smart. Not always common sense smart, but I’m smart. I can carry on a conversation about most things… except anything that has to do with math (this I’ve always known, but was glaringly obvious recently over coffee with a new friend). I am clumsy. I am messy. I am forgetful. Probably most of all, I am awkward. So awkward.

And I am transgender.

It’s always been a bit of a struggle to understand. My gender has always wandered back and fourth, back and fourth. It’s confusing. A question always running in my head:

“What am I?”

Within the last year, I have settled on the what. It’s been hard some times. The who feels like that will be a question that will take longer to answer.

On October 22, two days after my 26th birthday, I had my first appointment with my endocrinologist. That evening, I had my first shot of Testosterone.  My wife gave me the shot. She has been very supportive. I don’t have a video of the first shot like many people do. I thought about taking one, but I didn’t. Half of me is glad and half of me wishes I could watch it over and over. I think watching me yell and wimp out several times would be hilarious to watch. Funny enough, I don’t think shots are so scary.

Until someone is winding up to shove a 2 inch long needle into my thigh muscle.

Then shit gets real.

Today is day 27.

I haven’t seen any real changes yet. I wake up every morning eagerly anticipating my beard. I think that my voice has changed some. I am going to start doing random recordings to see if I can tell for myself. We already take a lot of videos of random things, so keeping up shouldn’t be hard. Logging them will be the part I need to keep up with. I have also started taking photos everyday. So when the changes start, I will be able to see when they happened.

My wife and I are going to maintain this blog together. A sort of transitioning together blog. It is our journey and our story, we figure why not tell it together.

Wes.